Nursing changes 'won't cost any jobs'

After a seven-month review process, Nelson's district nursing programme is set to change shape, but the Nelson Marlborough District Health Board says no jobs will be lost.

The board began an audit of the district nursing services in June last year. The audit looked at patient referrals, and whether to change some services so that they could better meet patient needs.

Director of nursing and midwifery Robyn Henderson said in August that the public was likely to notice little difference after the audit's recommendations were in place.

"This audit has been about ensuring that the service is operating effectively and meeting the service specifications - the proposal does not significantly change the service the public receive."

The audit's findings and recommendations were submitted to a review group of hospital and community nurses, which included an external district nurse leader. Conclusions formed by this group became the basis of a consultation proposal, which was forwarded to district nursing staff.

The staff have just finished reviewing this proposal and giving their feedback. Two community meetings were held in December, and a third took place last month.

Service manager of public health, district nursing and rural, Peter Burton, said the audit compared national and international best practice for district nursing with NMDHB practices and looked at how the service worked with other health providers, particularly in community care.

He said the process had given the board a better understanding of how it could support patients in the community and what resources it needed to achieve this, while also identifying opportunities for efficiencies.

The main change resulting was that the board would implement a single model of care across the district.

The Nelson Mail